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Company insight


pandemic has accentuated the need for digital transformation and, by extension, our product.”


All change Within the first five years of its launch Groups360 successfully booked hundreds of millions in revenue for hotels, with an average meeting size of 400 and an event cost of $100,000.


The search engine had also managed to reduce the time it takes to book a space to an average of 19 days compared to the industry average of 77 days. However, with the disruption caused by the pandemic ongoing, it’s no secret that the past 18 months has been hard on business travel and events, and on-going travel restrictions mean that the sector is only recovering slowly. In the US, which is a core market for Groups360, a huge proportion of business travel is domestic, so demand may be ramping up faster than in Europe, where the industry relies heavily on cross-border travel, but it will be a long road back to the dizzy heights of 2019. Either way, despite the recent resurgence of leisure travel across Europe, it goes without saying that full economic recovery without the reprisal of business-centred hospitality is impossible. Meanwhile, the relatively low rates of business travellers mean that hotels need to be more proficient than ever at locating them and responding to their needs quickly and effectively.


“There is pent-up demand, but travel restrictions make the picture more complicated,” says Humby. “But there is, more than ever, a need to help both hotel operators and event planners do more with less, as they have fewer resources than they did pre-pandemic.” “With GroupSync, it’s a win/win,” he adds. “Planners get better results and hotels get less lead spam. The leads they get are more appropriate, so conversion rates are higher, and they save a lot of time. We are a tech company, but one that has been built by people from the hotel industry. So, we know how to meet the needs of both planners and hotels.” Humby, who


Hotel Management International / www.hmi-online.com


notes that Groups360 is on course to reach its 2021 goal of signing up 20,000 hotels for its instant booking solution, spent 20 years at Marriott, which along with Accor, Hilton and IHG is one of the core investors in the company. These major brands have committed to Groups360’s mission to transform the group booking experience and bring it fully into the digital age. Ultimately, this means that Groups360 is now the first distribution channel to offer real-time group availability for both rooms and space. This breakthrough


allows planners to instantly book small, less complicated meetings and also send highly qualified RFPs for their more complex meetings.


“Even before the pandemic, people saw the need for greater speed and efficiency in the booking process,” Humby remarks. “For both buyers and suppliers, efficiency is key, and we can provide that with a proven technology and consumer-grade experience with which people are familiar in other industries. Change is long overdue.” ●


www.group360.com Grow your groups business


GroupSync helps make it real with instant group booking


Sell group rooms, meeting space or both online, 24/7


Give planners real-time pricing, availability and incentives


Spend less time on sales and RFP complexity


Meet us in Dallas The switch is on. HITECBooth #4718


See GroupSync for yourself – Book a tour: groups360.com/demo HMI088_Groups360.indd 5 13/08/2021 08:26 29


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